Jason Kidd is 10-2 in January and a legitimate candidate for Coach of the Month in the East, even if the Nets lose to the Thunder on Friday. The big run has pulled the Nets to within three games of the third seed in the woeful conference.
So has the criticism, at time vicious and in some cases approaching the personal, stopped? For the most part, yes. There was some chortling about the pundits about the Nets collapse on Monday, particularly his decision to call a late timeout, although that was a legitimate choice. And getting the ball in-bounds shouldn't have had such a high degree of difficulty for such a veteran team. That at least one player, and maybe more, thought there was a timeout left, does deserve some criticism.
Andrew Keh of the Times writes Thursday,
it is clear Kidd has found more comfort in his role, and he agreed after the team’s practice on Wednesday that he was a better coach now than he was the day the Nets began their preseason training camp at Duke.
"That’s the goal each day," he said of self-improvement. "There’s always something different to learn from, as a coach and as a player, too. I think we’ve all grown since Duke."
Two veterans who played with him on championship teams, Jason Terry with the Mavericks and Deron Williams with Team USA note the change in part is coming from his growing confidence.
"He was coming into something new, and as you grow in anything that’s new to you and the more you do something, the more confidence you gain," Terry said.
Not everyone agrees. Steve Lichtenstein of WFAN cites Monday's decision-making as evidence of an inexperienced coach whose mistakes can cost games.
- Jason Kidd Grows in Role, Along With Beard - NYTimes.com - Andrew Keh - New York Times
- Shrugging off pressure and paydays, Nets and Kidd find success - Sean Deveney - The Sporting News
- No Award Will Mask Brooklyn Nets’ Shortcomings At Head Coach - Steve Lichtenstein - WFAN